what I do

what I do

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A wonderful soup

We just finished the last of our Christmas soup tonight; isn't it amazing how soup just gets better and better each time it is heated up? I made it on Christmas Eve and when we returned home from our movie on Christmas day all I had to do was heat it up. It was so easy and it was just the perfect thing to eat after a big dinner the night before, a big Christmas breakfast and all the cookies and candy we had been munching on for days. It was even more perfect because of the rainy weather - soup just works in the rain, doesn't it?

Becky Luigart-Stayner
I always wanted to have a Christmas soup tradition. My neighbor has made a clam chowder for their family Christmas dinner for at least 20 years now. I really like that. I tried to do something similar for our family once before; I made a wonderful crab bisque for a few years but I think I liked it more than anyone else. But this year's soup went over very well and it was unanimously decided that it could be continued! I like the idea of starting new traditions; ones that my girl's will carry on with their families one day.

Country Living

Don't judge this recipe by the ingredients - trust me it is fabulous. My Mexican son-in-law, whose mother is a wonderful cook even approved. It came from an old cookbook that belonged to my mother. I don't remember my mom ever making the soup but somehow I started making it many years ago. The cookbook is, "Elena's Secrets of Mexican Cooking," by Elena Zelayeta, Prentice-Hall, Inc. 1958. I have copied the recipe exactly as it is in the book.

Sopa de Albondigas
(Meat Ball Soup)

You don’t have to be Mexican to enjoy this soup. It’s a lusty-gusty one, and may be even more so if peas and sliced carrots are added to it along with the albondigas, or meat balls.

1 onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons oil
½ can tomato sauce
3 quarts beef stock

¾ pound ground beef
¾ pound ground pork
1/3 cup raw rice
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tablespoon chopped mint leaves

Wilt onion and garlic in oil; add tomato sauce and beef stock. Heat to boiling point. Mix meat with rice, egg, mint, salt and pepper, and shape into little balls. Drop into boiling broth. Cover tightly and cook 30 minutes. Will freeze nicely. Serves 6 to 8.

My notes: I wasn't sure what size can of tomato sauce she meant; apparently in 1958 there was only one size, so I used a 15 oz. can (that is what I had on hand) and used about 2/3 of it). I also added sliced carrots (a must!) and next year I think I will add some peas as well. I was worried it might not be enough soup for us as we are a family of five and I wanted left-overs - but it was plenty! We have had it several times since Christmas day. The meatballs are very good - the mint is what makes them so special so don't leave that part out! My intention was to serve it with a nice salad (I never even made it!) but we did heat up tortillas and we had homemade tamales from my sister-in-law that we ate with it as well. Next year I think I will make it a day earlier - 2 days before Christmas - to give me more time on Christmas Eve and so that it is even better on Christmas day. I think that it would be a wonderful New Year's Day soup as well! Enjoy! 


L said...

Sounds yummy ... will have to try it. It's neat how our families love certain meals to be a tradition. For us it will be Chili Soup on New Years Day, I dare not try anything else. I believe my family is already drolling in anticipation of it!

Luciane at HomeBunch.com said...


I am in need of new ideas and this is a winner! I will try it soon!

Thank you so much for the recipe and beautiful pictures!


Luciane at HomeBunch.com